Yes, although I would not call it a 'trend', but rather a sound strategy. Every company needs to build up a cash-cow as back-bone first. Same goes for the airline industry. And in reality even more so, since long-haul flights mostly render due to business and first class pax contribution, not economy pax.
The only reason I tried the jet for a few weeks was that I already had those routes on my props, but that limited me to six legs per day for that plane because of the range (450nm). I hoped that with better speed, I could make eight legs per day, but that didn't work out - from theoretical route planning it did, but I needed higher turnaround than I had prevised.
And yes, I consider the cost advantage of props decisive when going into competition. I even try to fly my competitive routes only with my (so far) one purchased plane to give it a long breath concerning cash-flow. It's been quite challenging so far flying out of Frankfurt since World Airlines has basically taken everything or really bashes everyone out when they come in (e.g. look at Frankfurt-Hamburg currently).
As for that, I will find me some small airports with asphalt runways, where my DHC-7 can land and most other planes not...
Thanks again for your advice! I really appreciate that!